Russia halts gas supplies to Finland
24 May 2022
Finland has become the latest European country to have its natural gas supplies from Russia halted as a result of the ongoing payment dispute between Western countries and Russia. Natural gas imports via Imatra, the entry point for natural gas imports from Russia into Finland, were halted on May 21.
Image: Gasum Ltd
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, state-run Gazprom has demanded that payments for Russian gas must be made in roubles due to the sanctions being imposed on the country. Finland is one of several countries that has refused to do so. The move to stop gas imports comes just days after Finland formally applied to join the NATO military alliance.
In a statement, Finnish state-owned gas wholesaler Gasum said that gas imports via Imatra were cut off at 07:00 on May 21. As a result, Gasum said it would supply natural gas to customers from other sources through the Balticconnector pipeline. The Balticconnector link connects Finland with Estonia’s gas grid.
“It is highly regrettable that natural gas supplies under our supply contract will now be halted. However, we have been carefully preparing for this situation and provided that there will be no disruptions in the gas transmission network, we will be able to supply all our customers with gas in the coming months,” said Gasum’s CEO Mika Wiljanen.
Gazprom said that the decision to cut off natural gas imports was because Finland would not comply with its requirements to pay in roubles. Bulgaria and Poland were cut off in April for the same reason.
Gasum, as well as the Finnish government, have said that Finland was prepared for this situation and that the country would be able to cope without the gas imports. The country had imported the majority of its gas from Russia, however gas accounts for a small percentage of Finland’s energy consumption.